Today has been a much anticipated day! A day of answers.
This morning, our family (minus Annie who stayed behind for basketball practice) loaded up for what we thought would be a fun day with a quick stop off at the doctor. The first unexpected thing to happen was that after we were on I-55 for maybe a mile, and a car passed us with a red car tailgating it. It was so obvious that we discussed how dangerous it appeared. Maybe one minute later as we were just north of Sikeston, my attention shifted to the median about a 1/2 mile ahead. I saw what appeared to be the dust cloud from the tazmanian devil. Then I noticed it was a car rolling. All I could repeat over and over was, "Oh my goodness!" The car finally came to rest as it struck the guard cable on the southbound side, which kept it from getting hit again. We pulled over and noticed that it was the red car. We called my office and got them to radio the Highway Patrol, which was on the site fast. It drew quite a crowd. An exciting beginning to our trip. I hope the people were all ok.
Then we showed up to my new back doctor in Chesterfield at 11:30...fifteen minutes early. We walked out at 4:08. Wow! Didn't see that one coming. And with four out of five kids in tow, it was a challenge waiting that long. Even though I had an MRI done ahead of time, they sent me for XRays and for a CT scan. The kids did great, though, and the doctor was awesome. I really liked him. We had hoped to be in/out of the doctor in an hour or so, and get to squeeze in a little time at the zoo. Turned out that by the time we grabbed a quick supper at Chick-Fil-A and got in five o'clock traffic that we didn't get home until 8:10.
Long story short (too late), the doctor reasoned that after looking at all the tests, that my chronic pain comes from one or more of the following reasons: some mild arthritis, my L4-L5 disc is showing some wear-and-tear but nothing severe, and most of all, muscular dissection. He and I both believe that most of the pain is the latter of the three. After my first surgery in Dec 2007, I contracted Staph and had to turn around two weeks later and get cut open again. The first wound had not had time to heal properly yet, but they had to cut me again, and this time longer. Cutting those muscles two different times the way it had to be done has apparently caused some pain that he feels I will just have to live with. He did feel that I could probably help things by exercising more and by strengthening my lower back muscles. But he clearly said that I didn't need surgery right now. He thinks my neck needs it, but wants to wait until the new technology is approved to use replacement discs.
So...I got my answers. Answers I've been seeking for two years. Why do I continue to hurt? Turns out I may have to live with some pain...but so what! It could be a lot worse! There were people in that waiting room today that would have paid anything to feel like I do! Ones using wheelchairs, crutches, canes, and walkers...so I have nothing to complain about. These bodies aren't meant to last forever, and stuff wears out. But someday I will get my new body that won't have back pain or headaches. It will be glorious.
I know many of you have prayed for me, and I am so grateful! While this could be construed as bad news, I don't see it that way. I got a lot of peace from just finding out why. Not knowing for two years has been very frustrating. It felt like I got some closure today, and for that I am so thankful. Thanks to all of you for your prayers and concern.